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PIP assessment, mental health. Is this part of the test?

(23 Posts)
LilyRose80 Fri 27-Jan-17 16:23:11

I have PTSD, OCD and anxiety amongst other things. I've been claiming DLA for a few years but now being asked to apply for PIP.

I struggle to leave the house, have limited access to a car and am unable to use public transport due to OCD issues and social anxiety / panic attacks.

I clearly explained this on the form and asked for a home assessment.

They have sent me an appointment in a city 30 miles away.

After much upset my husband agreed to ring them to ask them to provide a taxi for me. They offered to change to a location 2 miles from me which was accepted. I just wonder why this location was not offered to start with.

Was the original appointment 30 miles away part of the test? To see if I could travel that far on my own and therefore must be lying? Feeling very paranoid and nervous about the whole assessment.

SlaveToDisney Fri 27-Jan-17 16:36:40

I think alot of the time yes it is actually "part of the test". I think that it is because there are alot of people falsely claiming for PIP. They did the same thing to my husband offering an assessment about 20 miles away in the end we got the doctors to write a letter to them insisting on a homw visit. I know its probably going to be hard but just try to relax a little and if all your reasonals are genuine then you have nothing to worry about. I have found that the assessors are usually very nice and they arent actually there to make the decision they just take down information and then the information they take along with your original application is sent to the awards centre and they then make the decision.

SlaveToDisney Fri 27-Jan-17 16:37:42

Apologies for all the typos in my response i blame the damn phone and sleepless nights.

Whatslovegottodo Fri 27-Jan-17 16:40:45

'There are a lot of people falsely claiming for PIP'.
Really?! I thought disabilty related benefits had one of the lowest fraud rates and were the hardest to get.
Yes OP it's all part of the test, even the walk to the room etc. A poster was on here a few weeks ago who was an ex PIP assessor and gave lots of interesting advice. Good luck.

joangray38 Fri 27-Jan-17 16:42:25

Yes it is - if you agree to the one 30 miles away it shows you are capable of going out, planning a journey etc. Every single thing is part of the assessment. When we were walking along the corridor to the assessment room I was asked very chattily if I had seen any good films lately and had I got a pet. These two questions are asked to see if you can go out/ concentrate etc and as I have mobility probs bend down to feed/cuddle it.

HelpMeHelpDS Fri 27-Jan-17 16:46:35

Disability and work website has a lot of information. So does the CAB, I think via the gov benefits website.

Unlike a previous poster I have heard assessor are under huge pressure to unjustly minimise people's problems, to save government money. There was a huge thread about this before Christmas, where an ex-assessor had walked away from the job for that very reason.

LilyRose80 Fri 27-Jan-17 16:55:20

Thanks. I thought it was strange asking me to travel to a different city. I have nothing to hide but was genuinely panicking about how I would get there on my own and worried that They would cancel my claim because the assessment would be too difficult to even get to.

GlitterGlue Fri 27-Jan-17 17:49:53

Are you going on your own? I would suggest taking someone with you. If you struggle to go out on your own they may say there was no evidence of this if you get there alone.

GlitterGlue Fri 27-Jan-17 17:51:21

Even if you have bags of evidence and have had to take a truck load of medication to get yourself there.

LilyRose80 Fri 27-Jan-17 17:55:07

My husband will take me there but will be looking after our 2 year old and we've been told children can't come into the room. At least I don't have to get there alone.

Owllady Fri 27-Jan-17 17:59:25

We were given one miles away too and they wouldn't change it confused

SingaSong12 Fri 27-Jan-17 18:03:46

If you struggle going out and need someone you know with you then explain that either you are a private person so don't want husband there even though it will be more stressful or that you don't have access to childcare and couldn't bring someone else to look after DS while husband came in.

dangermouseisace Sat 28-Jan-17 18:06:59

If there is any risk of you not turning up I'd press for a home visit rather than not turn up and get kicked off the benefit. They do definitely do home visits.

But yes, they look at how you get places, whether you need someone in the room with you etc. If you make an extra special effort on their behalf they will think that is how you can function day to day.

AndNowItsSeven Sat 28-Jan-17 18:12:00

People are not given appointments far away as part of the test that is simply where a slot came up at the time.
However if you do attend then yes that can be used as part of the test.

AndNowItsSeven Sat 28-Jan-17 18:13:04

If you going in the room alone you will be a very high risk of losing your pip. You need to do anything you possibly can to arrange childcare.

Darthvadersmuuuum Sat 28-Jan-17 18:19:10

Have you been provided with access to any psychological therapies OP? Sorry you're having such a terrible time. Hope you get the help you need.

YouOKHun Sat 28-Jan-17 18:38:00

I work for iapt (NHS psychological therapies provision - generally CBT and counselling). My IAPT hub is within a branch of MIND the mental health charity. This branch of MIND provide advocates and advice on managing social, housing, benefits issues against a backdrop of MH difficulties and has helped people struggling with PIP; perhaps you could contact your local branch of mind (administrative offices/therapeutic centre, not a high street shop, though they could direct you). You could ask your GP to refer you to IAPT for a telephone assessment as CBT has some very good outcomes for anxiety disorders and should have experienced therapists who treat PTSD using CBT, REBT and EMDR (generally held as the best therapies for trauma). IAPT can provide evidence that you are being treated for these problems which are not generally formally diagnosed, e.g. Anxiety disorders. Do you have a formal diagnosis of ptsd?

LilyRose80 Sun 29-Jan-17 10:26:27

I have formal diagnoses of OCD, PTSD and depression but no formal diagnosis of anxiety which just seems to be a symptom of the above.

I see nhs psychologist weekly and have access to crisis team support which I use regularly. Due to start CBT shortly.

I have no other childcare options so unless I can persuade them to allow my 2 year old in too then I'm on my own.

They were able to change appt to the much closer location for the day after the original appt which makes me think that it was part of the test rather than just the next available slot.

AndNowItsSeven Sun 29-Jan-17 14:08:38

No it definitely isn't part of the test originally, you did the right thing getting it changed.
Op re childcare even if it means paying a neighbour money you can't afford for childcare I would do that or take a friend.

MeadowHay Mon 30-Jan-17 23:21:29

Can you not get your GP or another medical professional in your care to support your request for a home visit? I asked for a home visit on my form as well due to my pretty severe anxiety problems with regards to leaving my home in particular to go to new places as it was likely that I would be too terrified to leave the house to go to the assessment on the day if it were elsewhere. They ignored my request, so DH called them and said again that I really needed a home visit and explained why, so they said they would consider the request if I had a letter from GP that supported it. So I had to speak to my GP who kindly wrote a short letter explaining about my anxiety disorder and how distressing it would be to go somewhere unfamiliar for the asessment and the very real prospect that I would be unable to attend at all hence she recommends a home visit. And we sent it to the DWP and then Capita "considered" it and changed my appointment to a home visit. So I would recommend you act similarly with your DH as your advocate if needs be.

LilyRose80 Tue 31-Jan-17 14:38:40

My appointment is tomorrow so I've left it too late to ask for GP support (which in hindsight I should have thought of as GP very supportive and has herself visited me at home a couple of times).

Been shaky with nerves all day, just want tomorrow to be over with.

Thanks for all of your support.

AndNowItsSeven Tue 31-Jan-17 16:24:34

Sorry you are so anxious don't hide that in the assessment though. If they see you visibly shaking, awful as it is for you it will increase the likelihood of a positive outcome.

MeadowHay Tue 31-Jan-17 21:21:50

Good luck Lily, it will be over with soon, you're being super brave and fingers crossed it all goes well. Tbf I find they are never as bad as you feel they are going to be if that's of any help. brew

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